A Specialized Agency of the African Union

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27 Nov, 2020
WE, participants in the 29th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), comprising Governors representing member states, representatives of multilateral and bilateral Development Partners, observers, and special guests, meeting virtually on 11 November 2020:
1. Noting that capacity development is a cross cutting issue that has been and remains central to the development discourse on the continent.
2. Noting that multilateral partners: the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), the African Union (AU), the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank among other stakeholders have committed to continue to collaborate and partner with ACBF in tackling the capacity challenges on the continent particularly in the areas of debt management, investment in skills development and knowledge generation, implementation of the AfCTA, women and youth empowerment and transforming the public sector through digital capacity building;
3. Expressing our satisfaction that there is constructive engagement between ACBF and the multilateral and bilateral partners in developing programs that respond to the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on most African countries.
4. Aware that the ravages of COVID-19 pandemic on the African continent may reverse the gains of the achievements made in capacity development over the years, and that this is likely to impede development in the near future unless efforts are made to ramp up activities that effectively address the challenges to inclusive and sustainable growth;
5. Acknowledging that the role that ACBF plays in addressing capacity challenges on the continent has now become more important than ever and that the African Union recognises this by approving a program support to ACBF.
6. Mindful that for ACBF to increase its footprint on the continent for the benefit of member states and to operate efficiently and effectively, the Operational Costs for the Foundation should increasingly be the responsibility of member states. Now therefore:
(i) Request ACBF to continue its capacity development efforts in support of member states to enable them to build resilience and effectively respond to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and post COVID–19 recovery and reconstruction.
(ii) Commend the strengthening of the partnership between the AU and ACBF which has culminated in the AU joining the governance organs of the Foundation thus creating a framework for greater coordination, transparency, and accountability for development results.
(iii) Welcome the decision by the AU to provide direct program support to ACBF and encourage the AUC to implement most of the planned capacity development programs through and in partnership with ACBF.
(iv) Enjoin African Member States to honour their pledges and pay their financial commitments to the ACBF Strategic Plan 2017-2021, and to do so without any further delay.
(v) Commend the effort of the AfDB, Afreximbank, AU, BADEA, UNDP and the World Bank to engage ACBF in developing new programs that respond to the multiple capacity deficiencies in many African countries.
(vi) Recognize the strong support from some Foundations providing financial resources to ACBF to intervene in critical areas of need such as women and youth entrepreneurship and institutional strengthening.
(vii) Call on global development partners to choose a coordinated approach to capacity development in Africa by investing in priority areas through ACBF.
7. Note the progress made in the negotiations for a Host Country Agreement between the ACBF and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and look forward to the matter being brought to a finality.
8. Commend ACBF for the efforts made over the years in addressing capacity challenges on the continent.
9. Look forward to the next meeting of the Board of Governors
Thomas Kwesi Quartey

ACBF has been granted the status of a specialized agency because of the potential to transform Africa through capacity development.

H.E. Thomas Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Chairperson, AU Commission
Erastus Mwencha

The recognition of ACBF as the African Union’s Specialized Agency for Capacity Development launches the beginning of a new era for capacity building by ACBF, which will require an appropriate level of political commitment and financial support from all stakeholders.

H.E. Erastus Mwencha, Chair, ACBF Executive Board
Lamin Momodou

The remarkable achievements ACBF has registered over the past 26 years is not by accident in our opinion. They have come through hard work, dedication, commitment, purposeful leadership, support from the member countries as well as productive partnership building.

Mr. Lamin Momodou MANNEH, Director, UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa
Goodall Gondwe

Africa needs ACBF as much, probably more now, than at the time it was created in 1991.

Hon. Goodall Gondwe, former Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance – Malawi
Ken Ofori Atta

Ghana’s partnership with ACBF is a tremendous blessing for us and therefore the opportunity for Ghana to host the 26th ACBF Board of Governors Meeting is something that we treasure.

Hon Ken Ofori Atta, Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance - Ghana